The clash between old world values and human desires frames the centerpiece for Director Rama Burshstein’s romantic drama Fill the Void (Lemale et ha'halal). Los Angeles audiences were invited into the world of an Orthodox Hassidic family in Tel Aviv when the Special Projects Committee's Global Cinema Series screened Burshstein’s Hebrew language film in the DGA Theater on May 1.
Fill the Void tells the story of Shira, a devout 18-year-old Israeli who is looking forward to marriage with a boy her own age. Her world is torn apart after her older sister dies in childbirth and her mother offers Shira as the replacement wife to prevent her brother-in-law from taking another bride abroad. Fill the Void was Israel’s submission to the 2013 Academy Awards®; and won Best Film, Best Director, and several other prizes at the Israeli Film Academy Awards.
After the screening, Burshstein, who was in Northern California participating in the 56th San Francisco International Film Festival, spoke about the making of Fill the Void via a SKYPE connection with Global Cinema subcommittee Chair Victoria Hochberg (Dawg), who moderated the discussion onstage in Los Angeles.